An employer can participate in a master trust, with other employers, rather than establish its own pension scheme. A framework for the assessment of defined contribution ("DC") occupational master trusts has been issued.

The framework was produced by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW), and was developed in association with the Pensions Regulator. The framework is intended to support trustees of master trusts and advisers who are engaged to provide independent assurance reports on master trusts’ governance and administration. While the assessment is voluntary, the Regulator expects schemes to obtain the independent assurance, and it will publish a list of schemes meeting the requirements for employers and advisers to use when selecting a scheme.

Further information on the framework can be found here.